Indonesia warns of more cyber attack havoc as business week starts


JAKARTA May 14 The Indonesian government said
the global cyber attack that takes computer data hostage is
likely to cause more havoc when offices reopen for business on
Monday.

A large hospital in Jakarta was struck by the “ransomware”
unleashed on Friday, but there has been no evidence so far to
suggest that Indonesia was one of the worst-hit countries.

Communication and Information Minister Rudiantara urged
companies to update their security before connecting computers
to local area networks when the week starts.

“This is crucial for businesses when reopening on Monday,
please beware and anticipate, and take preventive steps against
the WannaCry malware attack,” Rudiantara told a news conference.

Cyber extortionists tricked victims into opening malicious
malware attachments to spam emails. The ransomware encrypts data
on computers, demanding payments of $300-$600 to restore access.

The attack, which leverages hacking tools believed to have
been developed by the U.S. National Security Agency, has
infected tens of thousands of computers in nearly 100 countries.

Globally, hospitals, companies, and universities have been
affected, with the most disruptive attacks reported in Britain,
where hospitals and clinics were forced to turn away patients
after losing access to computers on Friday.

The Indonesian minister advised those hit by the malware
against paying ransoms to regain access to encrypted data, as
there was no guarantee the virus spreader would decrypt files.

On Saturday, an official at his ministry said that at least
two Jakarta hospitals, Dharmais and Harapan Kita, were affected
by the attack.

Harapan Kita later denied it had been affected.

In Dharmais, a nurse reported at 5 a.m. on Saturday that a
computer unit was displaying a message demanding $300, according
to a hospital staff member, who only gave his name as Willy.

An hour later, many more computers were found to be infected
and hospital staff said that data was locked on about 400 units
in all at the hospital.

The attack has not affected critical health services but has
caused bottlenecks in patient admissions process, Willy said.
(Reporting by Agustinus Da Costa; Writing by Fransiska Nangoy;
Editing by John Chalmers and Randy Fabi)